Joburg Taught Me…

To see magic in the unexpected.
That there are stories everywhere.
When things are getting tough, look up.
We may not have the mountain or the sea, but Joburg’s every changing sky is like
a window to another world.
There is beauty in imperfection.
To remember that the seasons always transform this city. What a wonderful surprise.
Oh the sunsets.
Oh the sunrises.
Friendly, kind people. I’m super proud to say we have them in boat loads around here.

Speaking of the sky, this is what it looked like yesterday morning.

PS. Ameezing’s first post ever  – A letter to Joburg.

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If I had to wear one thing, everyday, for the rest of my life it would be this dress.  It would make camping, driving and other people’s weddings kind of awkward, but it would be totally worth it.  Totally.

[Photo Source Unknown - Holler if You do]

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Learning Life Lessons Whilst Watching ‘The Village’

So last night, whilst watching the behind the scenes of ‘The Village’ (I needed a break from ‘The Walking Dead’, ha), M. Night Shayamalan was being interviewed about the movie and was asked why he chose to make this particular film.  He replied, ‘It was a challenge.  I needed to do something that scared me.’

What Mr Night, you’re not running away from things that scare you?  You’re running towards them?  Looking for them?  Seeking them out and slaying them like dragons with a challenge accepting sword of braveness?  Hhmm, interesting…


[Image from the internets]

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Some day soon, I would very much like to have a son called Max.  Max would most likely wear t-shirts with dancing bears on them and eat all the orange smarties first and be obsessed with dinosaurs and those little, green army soldiers with plastic parachutes.

We could go on adventures in the garden together and do experimental cooking with chocolate chips and zoo biscuits.  And craft, oh the crafty crafter crafting that would happen.  Space rockets and pet slinkies.  Pictures on the fridge made of buttons and prestick and determination.  Watching ‘The Incredibles’ one million times.

Maybe my daydream is a little odd (okay, and sad) but that’s alright.  That’s what daydreaming is for.

PS.  Some Ameezing Little People Fashion.

[Photo Source Unknown - Holler if You Do]

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Celebrating the Stillness

I have only recently learnt the joy of just hanging out.  Until a short while ago, I always thought to spend time with people you loved, it had to be an occasion.  Even if that occasion was a movie or meeting for a coffee.  But lately, I have discovered so much joy and happiness in just being in the same space together.  Hanging out.  Sometimes there’s tea, sometimes there’s wine, pizza, a movie.  But sometimes, it’s just being together.  What a special and sacred thing to spend precious time with the people you love.  Just being.  Together.

PS.  Next door to Happiness.


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A Little Spooked…

Gumboots -  Tiny, nameless shop at the Oriental Plaza. Puddle – Nature’s Own

A little spooked…  is the reason I have been quiet over the last while.  Let’s leave it at that and instead say ‘Hello Again! Holy Panda’s Toenails, I have missed you!’  (One day, one fine day ‘Holy Panda’s Toenails’ is going to catch on.  Oh, what a day it will be).

So what’s been happening?  It’s Spring up North, pastel colours, walks in Central Park, ditching the snow boots, etc.  Whilst here we stock up on stockings, eat soup (even though it’s still sort of salad season) and watch the sun go down way before 7pm, which is strange, but kind of delicious.

In two weeks I hop on a plane to Australia.  Travel is so surreal.  And always feels completely like it is never actually  going to materialise until the moment you are fastening your seatbelt, swallowing your Valium and watching the safety demonstration unfold.  I’m busy reading Bill Bryson’s ‘Down under’ and learning all kinds of fascinating things about Australia.  Like the fact that it is the ‘world’s sixth largest country’ and ‘of the world’s ten most poisonous snakes, all are Australian.’

I have also learnt that the Australian friends that I am about to meet are some of the most caring, loving and ameezing people I have come across (that’s all me, not Bill Bryson, although I’m sure he would agree).  I cannot wait for when our skyping finally turns to hugging and ‘So good to meet you’.

Let’s talk about going to the Doctor during a power failure.  Walking down a very dark corridor, following a man in a white coat who hopefully takes his oath very seriously.  Having that little temperature thingy under your tongue, whilst the Doctor takes your blood pressure, all by candle light, is beyond bizarre.  And yet, in the moment, and mostly just because this is the reality you have, you go on as though the lights are on and it’s just another Friday morning. I am happy to report that Doctor Power Failure took his oath very seriously and also prescribed some lovely virus reducing meds that had me fever free and out of bed the very next day.

On an unrelated note, if you like girls who wear spectacular librarian glasses for realsies, dress ameezingly and sport the best top knots ever, please see this girl immediately.

Thoughts on what to say when people ask ‘Where’s your other half?’ … You mean belly button to shoes or belly button to top of head?  Mostly this weekend I went with, ‘Oh, I don’t have one’.  Friends, there must, must be a more witty, graceful, Joan Holloway way to answer this that doesn’t leave everyone red like a blister the moment after it pops.

I’ve recently started following Alexa Chung (@alexa_chung) on Twitter, she’s the bees knees.  (I am @MsAmeezing on Twitter.)

To end, a new-found secret:  Rye Toast with Nutella.  Ameezing.

PS. Nuns and rude mannequins.  And the loneliest whale in the world.

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Well this just took my breath away…

It’s time.

[Found here.]

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Keep Calm and Blush On

You guys, sometimes I used to get terribly awkward.  Anything beyond, “How do you do?”, and I would blush, break out in teeny beads of sweat and usually, thirty seconds later my fight-or-flight would kick in and and I’d be out of there.  With the exception of blushing (which for some reason is getting worse.  A universal unfairness that blushing makes you blush more which makes you blush more which makes…I digress) with the exception of blushing, thankfully with age, most of the layers of awkwardness are slowly, reptile-y shedding themselves.

And then, there was yesterday. I was collecting some paintings from a tiny art shop in town, which is run by a beautiful boy, with totally manly, long hair, blue grey eyes and an air of endearing shyness.  We awkwardly, shyly, determinedly make small talk whilst he wraps the paintings.  Winter, the strike, why I am wearing what look like man shoes, Winter again.

I lend him a pen to write the invoice.  For an awkward person and a shy person, it’s all going rather well until I say, “Okay, thank you for everything” and reach forward to get my pen back.  Long haired, shy boy inexplicably takes my hand.  So suddenly, there we stand, with nothing but sweaty palms and a bic pen between us, awkwardly, shyly holding hands on a Wednesday morning in a teeny art shop in town.

Holy pandas toenails you guys, it was awkward.  As if the situation wasn’t Titaniced enough already I chuck another ice berg at it by saying, “Uh, I just wanted my pen back.”  To which he replies, “Yes, uh, my bad”.  The next few minutes are a blush-filled haze of dropping my car keys, bashing my foot, stumbling over saying goodbye and feeling just darn betrayed by my own awkwardness.

Lesson learnt: Always carry two pens.

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A Cake. A Skirt. A Flower.

Creative title, no?

Failing kids or pets, this cake, which lives on my desktop, is what I lovingly stare at for hours at a time.

…and those shoes. And that hat.  And those green chairs.  And Paris….

To me, orchids are a little like cats.  They know that we don’t know that they know.  You know? I accidently knocked this flower off of a new plant as I brought it home the other day.  Fortunately, it obligingly sat in a teeny tea cup for days,  looking all exotic and wise.

Happy Wednesday, Ameezing Ones.

PS. A little d.i.y – f.u.n.

[Cake - Source Unknown, Skirt - The Sartorialist, Flower - Ameezing]

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A piece of past, with a side of watermelon.

Some of my days of work are spent largely driving around Joburg in search of all kinds of things for all kinds of reasons.  Hours and hours spent in the car.  Mostly, I eat loads of watermelon (healthy, delicious, tastes like a holiday), listen to loads of Classic FM (soothing, dramatic, good for perspective) and imagine combinations of words strung together. Sentences, paragraphs, stories, moments, memories.

Here are yesterdays’ :

Gliding her hand across surfaces, she moves around the room.  Grazing the cracked, marble window sill,  feeling the teddy bear softness of the aging, velvet couch,  touching the papery pages of the books lined on the shelf.  She is saying goodbye.  Goodbye to the way the sunlight falls on the knobbly diningroom table, goodbye to the way their cat sleeps, curled up on a chair like a breathing cushion.  Goodbye to dinner parties for two, four, ten.  Goodbye to the tree that took them by surprise by blooming when they thought it long dead.

Goodbye even to the things that are going with her because this is the death of them there, in that life, in that space.

She does this for days whenever home alone.  Walk around the room, breath in moments, breath out farewells.  A surreal, made-up ritual in the hope that walking out the door for one last time will feel only natural after so many goodbyes.

PS.  Braveness.

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